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How to Clean Germs off of Everyday Household Items

Although phones, keys and keyboards are among the most-used items in many homes, they are likely the items you clean the least. That’s because it’s easy to remember to keep a handle on certain areas of your home—but easy to forget to clean items where germs gather simply because of frequency of use. According to Ranker, these are the top 10 items you use everyday which deserve your undivided cleaning attention:

  1. Money—while you don’t have to actually launder the green and coinage you use to pay for gum and metered parking, you might be surprised to discover that the number one dirtiest item we use every day is cold hard cash.
  2. Light Switch—it turns out that turning off the light switch in a public area is just about the nastiest task anyone can be assigned to. All the germs hang out on and around the plastic switch. In your home, this is bad enough. But add the general public to the equation and you’ve got a recipe for approximately 217 bacteria per square inch. Gross.
  3. Computer and/or Piano Keyboard—as we discussed in a recent post, computer keyboards and laptops are health hazards. For example, a British consumer group study done in 2009 tested a host of computer keyboards and found that one in four were health hazards! In fact, some keyboards harbor even more germs than the average toilet seat. Check out our previous post to find easy and thorough ways to clean your computer.
  4. Phones—with the average person touching and tapping his or her cell phone hundreds of times a day, they have become technological Petri dishes for tens and thousands of germs, due not only to the fact they are handled but also because of the heat that they generate. Did you know that you can purchase a phone that has been treated with an anti-microbial coating? As for your home phone: clean the handset, receiver, and cord. Clean with alcohol wipes or rubbing alcohol with a paper towel or microfiber cloth.
  5. Toilet Seats—the white porcelain surface plays host to all sorts of germs, diseases and viruses. Statistics show that there are 295 bacteria for every square inch of toilet space. And though that is not as bad as the 3.2 million typically on the average toilet bowl, it’s not a great place to lay your head.
  6. Shopping Cartsagain, not something your average homeowner keeps on premises, but good to know the next time you head off to the store. ABC News reports “Shopping carts were loaded with more saliva, bacteria and even fecal matter than escalators, public telephones and even public bathrooms.” So use the wipes most markets provide by the entrance. Or, better yet…bring some of your own.
  7. Remote Controls—have you ever spilled a little bit of soda or ice cream on your television remote and left it there simply because you forgot to clean it up until it stuck? We didn’t think so. But what is worse than caked on crud is the fact that remote controls are often covered with hidden dangers such as viruses and bacteria like MRSA, VRE and SARS—all of which are frightfully easily transferred.
  8. Bathtubs & Shower Stalls—home to toxic bacteria which is often left unnoticed, bathtubs and showers can harbor scary stuff which can lead to infections such as staph urinary tract, pneumonia, septicemia, and numerous skin conditions. Bacterium left lingering near the drain of a tub or shower is worse than bacteria found in the toilet! By thoroughly cleaning the bathtub with just once a week, you can minimize these unwanted germs.
  9. Kitchen Sink—this may actually be the dirtiest place in the house. That’s right…dirtier than the bathroom. There are typically 500,000 bacteria per square inch in the kitchen sink drain alone. To solve the problem, pour ½ cup of baking soda and ½ of a cup of vinegar down the drain. Then, just rinse with hot water.
  10. Kitchen Sponge—the same item which removes grit from your dishes, counter top and sink is actually the dirtiest room of all. Its moist, micro-crevices make it difficult to disinfect. So, instead of wiping surfaces clean with a sponge, most of us are just transferring bacteria from one surface to another. One easy remedy to clean household sponges is to microwave them for 60 seconds. You can also wash them on the top rack of most dishwashers. But your safest bet is to toss them after one week of use.

To help keep a lid on household dirt of all kinds, call the professionals at My Cleaning Lady, a domestic referral agency.  The house cleaners we refer offer complete home cleaning services including thorough dusting at reasonable prices. My Cleaning Lady Referral Agency proudly serves Arcadia, Chino, Chino Hills, Duarte, Ontario, Pomona, LaVerne, Covina, Rancho Cucamonga, Fontana, Montclair, Claremont, Phillips Ranch, Upland, West Covina, Glendora, San Dimas, and Sierra Madre. Visit call (909) 593-6690 for information or to arrange a free estimate.